Welcome to the first installment of Viral Video Breakdown. A few things you can expect throughout this series:
- Fun viral videos to watch, or in some cases, reminisce about.
- Critical facts and opinions regarding how some of these videos initially went viral.
- Takeaway nuggets and tips for how you can better your video content and strategy!
- A sometimes lighthearted approach - because I like to keep it light.
So how is this going to work? What are the parameters and structure to how I breakdown these videos and give them an opinionated score? "Great question, Tom! Let me give you a little 'peek under the kimono' to the specific areas being graded for these videos."
Each of the four sections will be graded 1 to 5 (5 = video jesus, 1 = noob status) for an aggregate final score! The four critical sections being critiqued are:
- Viral Status Speed: How long did it take this video to reach viral status? The latest data (2011) states that a video is considered viral content if it surpasses 5 million video views in the span of 3-7 days. To be able to score this properly, we will judge by "average views per day", because each video has been public for different timeframes. If the video averages above 500K views per day, it will get the highest grade and tier down from there!
- General Noise: Does the video have continuous sharing and engagement? If they post a new video does it show a spike in shares and engagement? If so, this helps the score.
- Production Value: This is a little subjective, but judging a video by production quality and value still resonates. Is the video professionally made, or does it have that "Word Art" production feel?
- Bonus Moments: Beyond being a video that people are watching with the obvious goal of going viral, did this video have secondary meaning to help an outside organization, to deliver impact based on awareness, etc? Does the video have philanthropic tones where they give back based on video views? If they have some form of "paying it forward", it will boost the score.
So, let us begin with arguably one of the top videos to watch if you love hockey, specifically hockey lingo. The 2018 Minnesota State High School All Hockey Hair Team.
Viral Status Speed - 3.5/5
This video has been live for 45 days and has generated 621,411 views. This puts us at ~13,800 views per day, which is very low on the viral scale. The reason this score isn't lower is because this is a super niche video that specifically targets fans of hockey. So considering that, it's actually hitting a pretty high score when it boils down to targeted audience. Just because a video doesn't appeal to the entire world doesn't mean it can't be considered viral in the long run.
General Noise - 4/5
Because this is an annual video that gets released, you can see the buzz around the posting. The YouTube Channel Game On! Minnesota averages close to 30 new subscribers a month, and posts sporadically throughout the year (they seem to bulk upload at given times). But, at the time they release the All Hair Hockey Team video, they spike in channel subscriptions to nearly 1,000/month. The impact this annual video has shows in the publicity that this channel gets come March, and the shares on this video in the first day climbs well into the thousands.
Production Value - 4/5
This video series began back in 2011 for reference. And the production quality back then was as good as a 5 year old trying to figure out Final Cut Pro. It wasn't great, but honestly, it didn't need to be. The meat of the video was funny as shit, and it still is to date. With that said, the production quality has picked up through the years to include HD picture and audio, as well as some more "professional quality" transitions...I say that lightly because the jump in quality was tremendous in it's own right.
On top of that, they have brought in NHL talent to give quick audio/video snippets throughout the video, so beyond what you see, they are bringing in high level athletes to bolster this video series specifically. Because of that, the score is higher than most would think. Remember, production value goes beyond how you see a produced piece from an editing standpoint, it reaches the on air talent and perception of the message you tell. Not to mention, you have other organizations jumping on the all hair hockey team bandwagon:
Bonus Moments - 4.5/5
From a funny annual piece that was posted sometime in March of 2011 to now, this series has evolved. Always remaining humorous and light, the series has spread into public media, such as the ESPN "E:60" short that brought this joyful campaign to light, but it goes deeper. In the past couple of years, the video raises money for the Hendrickson Foundation, an organization that aims to grow the game of hockey beyond able bodied athletes. It doesn't explicitly say how much is donated to Hendrickson, but the fact is that it gives back to a great cause that allows individuals to enjoy a sport they never thought possible based on their circumstances. Overall, the portion of the video that calls this foundation out is a very heartwarming touch to an all together funny series.
Overall Score - 4/5
The video itself is a strong series that captivates the masses. It has so much humor, and keeps you wanting the next year's installment to come out tomorrow! Although we can't guarantee that we can create you a video that will go viral, we certainly know how to captivate an audience with our video work. If you're looking to take your video marketing to new heights, drop us a line and talk to Tom to hash out your next video project!